Scratch Card Tickets. Have won a prize? Can I cancel my ticket?

The Tickets - scratch card
The Tickets

For those of you who don’t yet know – a Scratch Card tickets are; a small card, often made of a thin paper-based card that contains a unique PIN.

This pin is concealed by a plastic/latex layer. You can reveal it by scratching off the opaque layer. Some of the many other names for scratch cards are;

  • Scratch offs,
  • Scratch tickets,
  • Scratchers,
  • Scratchies,
  • Scratch-its,
  • Scratch-and-wins,
  • Instant games
  • or Instant lotteries.

While physical cards are the traditional form of these scratchie games, you can now play these games online and through various Apps.

The entire scratch area must be scratched off to see whether a prize has been won. Any card may or may not be a winner.

There is no way to tell without revealing the code. The results do not depend on which portions you scratch off.

In the case of games such as quizzes, you do not need to scratch all areas, only the areas corresponding to the right answer.

There are also a few gambling applications where the scratch card may win or lose, depending on which areas are scratched. In cases like these, should you scratch out too many places, the card will become invalid.

If you have lost, you may scratch out all areas should you wish to see if, how and what you may have won with this scratch card.

The scratch card tickets

When it comes to scratch cards, not only are there many different names for them, but there are also multiple different types of tickets. Such as;

  • A ‘Dip’ Ticket – The system randomly chooses your ticket numbers.
  • A ‘Pick your own’ Ticket allows you to choose the numbers you want to play.
  • A ‘Favorite’ Ticket – You can save a set of numbers to your account as favourites. This makes it quick and easy for you to play your favourite numbers.

How do I know if I have won a prize?

How Do I Know if I have won a prize
How Do I Know if I have won a prize?

If you are playing through your MyLotto account, you will receive a message saying you have won. For an Instant Play game, there will be a screen displaying the results at the end.

Your MyLotto account will automatically be credited with your winning amount if it is under $1,000. Should you be lucky enough to win more than $1,000, you will need to complete an online prize claim form. You will also receive an e-mail informing you of your win.

Can I still claim the prize on an old ticket?

Can i Still claim the prize on an old ticket
Can I still claim the prize on an old ticket?

You can claim your Instant Kiwi prizes for up to 12 months from the closing date of the game. Any winning tickets for Lotto NZ games are eligible to claim prizes 12 months after purchase.

Should any prizes be left unclaimed after this date, all funds are returned to the prize pool for use in future promotions.

What if my ticket is stolen, lost or damaged?

What if my ticket is stolen, lost or damaged
What if my ticket is stolen, lost or damaged

Lotto stores will have a “Stolen, Lost or Damaged Ticket” form that you can fill out and send to the claims department.

The more information that you can provide about the date, time and location of purchase, the better the chances of getting help.

Can I cancel my ticket?

Can I still claim the prize on an old ticket?

If you are playing online or through the app, you can not cancel the ticket once you receive payment confirmation. You can only change your mind before clicking the Buy Now button.

If you wish to cancel a ticket you bought in-store, it is possible to cancel it on the same day, at the same store, before the draw.

Tips to Increase the Odds of Winning

1. Don’t Opt for Cheap Scratch Cards

Don't Opt for Cheap Scratch Cards
Don’t Opt for Cheap Scratch Cards

Let’s start with one of the easiest ways to increase your chances for bigger rewards when buying scratch cards: avoiding the cheap ones.

If you don’t buy scratch cards regularly, or you do but didn’t put a lot of thought into it, it might be tempting to go for the cheapest ones.

However, you should know that the cheapest scratch cards are affordable because they have the lowest prize pool.

Scratch cards in the price range of $5 and below have a lower percentage of winners, smaller rewards, and a smaller difference between prizes.

On the other hand, more expensive scratch cards are the complete opposite.

So, when you try your luck with scratch cards, you should opt for one scratch card that costs $10 or two for $5 each instead of buying 10 that cost $1 each.

2. Read the Small Print

Read the Small Print
Read the Small Print

Just like when taking a loan or signing any contract, you should always read the small print on your scratch card tickets before buying them.

The main reason you should go through this step every time you buy a ticket is to get familiar with the odds you are getting.

This is very important, because when you are gambling, no matter how much the game’s results are luck dependent, you should always know what odds and Return to Player you are getting.

In this case, one in ten does not mean that if you buy 10 tickets, you are guaranteed that one of them will be a winner.

Instead, it means that one in ten tickets will be a winner when you consider all the tickets printed in that series.

3. Buy In Bulk if There Haven’t Been Any Winners

Buy In Bulk if There Haven’t Been Any Winners
Buy In Bulk if There Haven’t Been Any Winners

This secret on how to win scratch-offs is very popular with experienced ticket buyers. New players are often unfamiliar with buying scratch tickets in bulk if the store where the tickets are sold hasn’t had any recent winners.

With this approach, buying more tickets at once is recommended rather than buying fewer tickets on multiple trips to the store.

This is because manufacturers usually place several winning tickets in one bunch, so with each losing ticket, the odds for the next ticket to be a winning one increase.

4. Inquire about the Recent Winners from the seller

Inquire about the Recent Winners from the seller
Inquire about the Recent Winners from the seller

If you are buying scratch cards in an outlet where you don’t know the seller, it is better to try to get into a subtle conversation to find out if there were any recent winners.

It might often be odd, especially when you are an introvert, so keep that in mind and decide if awkward conversations are worth the information.

5. Retain Old Tickets

Retain Old Tickets
Retain Old Tickets

This is one of the scratch-off lottery ticket secrets that many players know, but most people implement it for one of two main reasons, and here we will mention both.

The first reason to retain your ticket is to bring it with you the next time you go ticket buying and give it to your seller to check them again in the system.

Doing this leaves no room for mistakes or wrong interpretations of the ticket, something that happens more than you think.

Another reason you shouldn’t throw away your old scratch cards is if a running jackpot is awarded based on the number of tickets.

Keeping old tickets will show you how much money you spent on your scratch card hobby in a certain period. This is a great way to prevent spending too much on tickets and allow your hobby to get out of hand.

6. Manage Your Bankroll

Manage Your Bankroll
Manage Your Bankroll

This might not directly increase your chances of winning, but it will give you a stable structure and guarantee that you will stay in the game longer. The thug gives you more shots at that grand prize of the jackpot.

You might think managing your bankroll is only essential in betting, poker, or gambling games. But it is not true.

And when there is luck involved, you should be extra careful not to get too emotional and spend more than you can afford.

Maintaining a bankroll and tracking your wins and losses is a great way to stay on top of things and keep your hobby enjoyable.

7. Avoid Promotions

Avoid Promotions
Avoid Promotions

This is one of the best scratch-off ticket secrets you can be aware of because it will save you a ton of money.

Unlike sports betting, casino, or poker, where promotions can boost your bankroll, scratch card promos will do the opposite.

Companies that sell scratch cards promote buying ticket bundles at a discounted price only when they know the top prizes for those ticket series have been paid out.

Thus, buying discounted bundles of scratch card tickets means buying tickets with low prizes.

8. Use The Singleton Method

Use The Singleton Method
Use The Singleton Method

This might sound like a math or physics theory, but it is a method that scratch card players use to detect winning tickets.

The Singleton method is a scratch card method in which players evaluate the print on the left of the ticket, beside the actual scratch, and look for patterns that might come up with a winning ticket.

Although most scratch card companies are aware of this method and have changed how they print their tickets, many manufacturers out there don’t pay attention to this, making the Singleton method pretty viable even today.

About the author

Michaela Scott

Michaela Scott

Michaela Scott stands as one of the leading voices in New Zealand's online gaming scene.

With a tenure spanning nearly a decade at PokiesMobile NZ, Michaela's contributions range from meticulously crafted game reviews to in-depth industry analysis.

Hailing from Christchurch, she brings a mix of local insights and global perspectives to her writings.

Her dedication to staying ahead of industry trends and her unparalleled expertise make her pieces both educational and enjoyable.